Measures the displayed width of unicode strings in a terminal
This library is mainly for CLI programs that carefully produce output for Terminals, or make pretend to be an emulator.
Problem Statement: The printable length of most strings are equal to the number of cells they occupy on the screen 1 character : 1 cell. However, there are categories of characters that occupy 2 cells (full-wide), and others that occupy 0 cells (zero-width).
Solution: POSIX.1-2001 and POSIX.1-2008 conforming systems provide wcwidth(3) and wcswidth(3) C functions of which this python module’s functions precisely copy. These functions return the number of cells a unicode string is expected to occupy.
The stable version of this package is maintained on pypi, install using pip:
pip install wcwidth
Problem: given the following phrase (Japanese),
>>> text = u'コンニチハ'
Python incorrectly uses the string length of 5 codepoints rather than the printible length of 10 cells, so that when using the rjust function, the output length is wrong:
>>> print(len('コンニチハ')) 5 >>> print('コンニチハ'.rjust(20, '_')) _______________コンニチハ
By defining our own “rjust” function that uses wcwidth, we can correct this:
>>> def wc_rjust(text, length, padding=' '): ... from wcwidth import wcswidth ... return padding * max(0, (length - wcswidth(text))) + text ...
Our Solution uses wcswidth to determine the string length correctly:
>>> from wcwidth import wcswidth >>> print(wcswidth('コンニチハ')) 10 >>> print(wc_rjust('コンニチハ', 20, '_')) __________コンニチハ
Choosing a Version
Export an environment variable, UNICODE_VERSION. This should be done by terminal emulators or those developers experimenting with authoring one of their own, from shell:
$ export UNICODE_VERSION=13.0
If unspecified, the latest version is used. If your Terminal Emulator does not export this variable, you can use the jquast/ucs-detect utility to automatically detect and export it to your shell.
Use function wcwidth() to determine the length of a single unicode character, and wcswidth() to determine the length of many, a string of unicode characters.
Briefly, return values of function wcwidth() are:
Indeterminate (not printable).
Does not advance the cursor, such as NULL or Combining.
Characters of category East Asian Wide (W) or East Asian Full-width (F) which are displayed using two terminal cells.
Function wcswidth() simply returns the sum of all values for each character along a string, or -1 when it occurs anywhere along a string.
Full API Documentation at http://wcwidth.readthedocs.org
Install wcwidth in editable mode:
pip install -e.
Execute unit tests using tox:
Regenerate python code tables from latest Unicode Specification data files:
tox -e update
Supplementary tools for browsing and testing terminals for wide unicode characters are found in the bin/ of this project’s source code. Just ensure to first pip install -erequirements-develop.txt from this projects main folder. For example, an interactive browser for testing:
This library is used in:
jquast/blessed: a thin, practical wrapper around terminal capabilities in Python.
jonathanslenders/python-prompt-toolkit: a Library for building powerful interactive command lines in Python.
dbcli/pgcli: Postgres CLI with autocompletion and syntax highlighting.
thomasballinger/curtsies: a Curses-like terminal wrapper with a display based on compositing 2d arrays of text.
selectel/pyte: Simple VTXXX-compatible linux terminal emulator.
astanin/python-tabulate: Pretty-print tabular data in Python, a library and a command-line utility.
LuminosoInsight/python-ftfy: Fixes mojibake and other glitches in Unicode text.
nbedos/termtosvg: Terminal recorder that renders sessions as SVG animations.
peterbrittain/asciimatics: Package to help people create full-screen text UIs.
bluebear94/Terminal-WCWidth: Perl 6
fumiyas/wcwidth-cjk: LD_PRELOAD override
joshuarubin/wcwidth9: Unicode version 9 in C
- 0.2.6 2023-01-14
Updated tables to include Unicode Specification 14.0.0 and 15.0.0.
Changed developer tools to use pip-compile, and to use jinja2 templates for code generation in bin/update-tables.py to prepare for possible compiler optimization release.
- 0.2.1 .. 0.2.5 2020-06-23
Repository changes to update tests and packaging issues, and begin tagging repository with matching release versions.
- 0.2.0 2020-06-01
Enhancement: Unicode version may be selected by exporting the Environment variable UNICODE_VERSION, such as 13.0, or 6.3.0. See the jquast/ucs-detect CLI utility for automatic detection.
Enhancement: API Documentation is published to readthedocs.org.
Updated tables for all Unicode Specifications with files published in a programmatically consumable format, versions 4.1.0 through 13.0
- 0.1.9 2020-03-22
Performance optimization by Avram Lubkin, PR #35.
Updated tables to Unicode Specification 13.0.0.
- 0.1.8 2020-01-01
Updated tables to Unicode Specification 12.0.0. (PR #30).
- 0.1.7 2016-07-01
Updated tables to Unicode Specification 9.0.0. (PR #18).
- 0.1.6 2016-01-08 Production/Stable
LICENSE file now included with distribution.
- 0.1.5 2015-09-13 Alpha
Bugfix: Resolution of “combining character width” issue, most especially those that previously returned -1 now often (correctly) return 0. resolved by Philip Craig via PR #11.
Deprecated: The module path wcwidth.table_comb is no longer available, it has been superseded by module path wcwidth.table_zero.
- 0.1.4 2014-11-20 Pre-Alpha
Feature: wcswidth() now determines printable length for (most) combining characters. The developer’s tool bin/wcwidth-browser.py is improved to display combining characters when provided the --combining option (Thomas Ballinger and Leta Montopoli PR #5).
Feature: added static analysis (prospector) to testing framework.
- 0.1.3 2014-10-29 Pre-Alpha
Bugfix: 2nd parameter of wcswidth was not honored. (Thomas Ballinger, PR #4).
- 0.1.2 2014-10-28 Pre-Alpha
Updated tables to Unicode Specification 7.0.0. (Thomas Ballinger, PR #3).
- 0.1.1 2014-05-14 Pre-Alpha
Initial release to pypi, Based on Unicode Specification 6.3.0
This code was originally derived directly from C code of the same name, whose latest version is available at http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~mgk25/ucs/wcwidth.c:
* Markus Kuhn -- 2007-05-26 (Unicode 5.0) * * Permission to use, copy, modify, and distribute this software * for any purpose and without fee is hereby granted. The author * disclaims all warranties with regard to this software.
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